NY LGBT People With HIV Lag in Vaccinations

Bill Donohue | February 7, 2022 | 11:34am EST
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Featured is an LGBT protester. (Photo credit: ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images)
Featured is an LGBT protester. (Photo credit: ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images)

The Friday edition of the CDC's "Morbidity and Mortality Report"  found that "lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) persons are at increased risk for severe COVID-19 illnesses because of a higher prevalence of comorbidities." This accounts for their higher hospitalization rate and mortality rate.

It also found that those who were diagnosed with HIV in New York State had lower COVID-19 vaccination rates than the New York adult population.

Why would LGBT people with HIV, who are at risk of contracting COVID, be less likely to get vaccinated than the rest of us? And what does the CDC say we should do?

The CDC says that LGBT individuals "historically experience challenges accessing, trusting, and receiving health care services." 

Nowhere do the multiple authors of this study suggest that it is the behavioral choices made by those who engage in risky sexual activities that accounts not only for their HIV status, but for the prevalence of their comorbidities. 

Just as contentious is the recommendation that we need to develop a "better-informed public health strategy to achieve health equity for the LGBT population." 

Does the CDC really believe that the problem is lack of information? 

Nowhere do the authors suggest that it is the irresponsible behavior that marks a disproportionate segment of the LGBT community that accounts for the health disparity. 

The CDC has not hesitated to recommend draconian lockdowns to combat COVID, and it certainly hasn't hesitated to recommend restrictions on houses of worship. Why, then, does it not exercise the same aggressive policy recommendations when it comes to LGBT people? 

Once again, the CDC is showing that politics counts more than science in driving its conclusions. It also shows that the ruling class has a problem treating sexual minorities as equals, the same way it has a problem treating racial minorities as equals. 

Bill Donohue is president and CEO of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, the nation's largest Catholic civil rights organization. He was awarded his Ph.D. in sociology from New York University and is the author of nine books and many articles.

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